A biological female attending Chasco Middle School in Port Richey, Florida decided to self-identify as a male. Instantly, the unidentified student was granted access to the boys’ restrooms and locker rooms. Neither the boys at the school nor their parents allegedly were provided any forewarning of this situation. Now, a man who teaches physical education classes at the school is under fire for refusing to observe boys’ showers in which the transgender girl might be present.
Liberty Counsel, a leading law group specializing in cases of constitutional violations, wrote a letter addressed to the Chairman of the District School Board of Pasco County, Cynthia Armstrong. The letter revealed that the transgender girl went into the boys’ locker room on September 27, 2018, “catching boys (literally) with their pants down,” and “causing them embarrassment and concern.” Boys came out of the locker room expressing their worries to Stephanie Christensen and Robert Oppedisano, two physical education teachers at the school. The educators told the boys they couldn’t do anything because their superiors “had placed a gag order on them, and told them that they could not answer the boys on these questions.”
When both teachers objected to the behavior, administrators informed them they had to abide by the school’s policy. So, Christensen and Oppedisano were ordered to not give the male students any warning of when the transgender girl was going to enter the bathroom. Reportedly, this seemingly common courtesy would be “discriminatory.” As if these unfathomable actions weren’t potentially harmful enough, school administrators instructed Oppedisano to go into the locker room in order to observe the kids, “despite a girl potentially being nude or undressed in that area.”
The letter written by Liberty Counsel read, “The administrators told him that the girl in question had ‘every right to use the locker room,’ including the right to disrobe in the open locker area and shower in its open showers where Robert is required to periodically walk in and supervise.” This correspondence went on to state, “Robert will not knowingly place himself in a position to observe a minor female in the nude or otherwise in a state of undress.” Oppedisano has reportedly been told he will be transferred to another school as a form of discipline. The reason supplied him was “For ‘not doing your job in the locker room.’”
In the letter, Liberty Counsel contended that the egregious school policy was adopted without even being approved by the educational board. Liberty Counsel remarked, “No law requires this course of events. Objective biological sex – male and female – is (and should remain) the determining factor for access to gender-appropriate public school facilities and programs, not subjective mental ‘identity’ claims or beliefs that one is the opposite sex, or a feeling that one is not one’s actual biological sex. The District is violating male students’ and teachers’ rights at Chasco Middle School.”
The non-profit organization asserted, “The Board and the community should be aware that there is no state-wide Florida law recognizing ‘gender identity’ as a protected class. In addition, the U.S. Departments of Education (‘DOE’), Justice (‘DOJ’), and Labor (‘DOL’), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (‘EEOC’), and various agency officials have been enjoined from asserting that Title VII and Title IX require that all persons must be afforded the opportunity to have access to restrooms, locker rooms, showers, and other intimate facilities which match their ‘gender identity’ rather than their biological sex.”
Giving a poignant explanation about the chaos at Chasco Middle School, Liberty Counsel said, “The privacy rights of male students do not disappear or depend solely on the beliefs of one female student about her own gender. A boy’s rights are his, and not dependent upon a female’s beliefs. The same is true for the privacy rights of females as to males. The conscience rights of teachers likewise do not evaporate based simply upon one student’s beliefs about her gender.”
Pray for students and teachers across this nation who have to venture into increasingly secular and unchartered grounds at school every day.
~ 1776 Christian